Collaborative Research Group


University of Münster
University of Bonn

3 PhD/Doctoral Researchers

The Institute of Political Science at the University of Muenster, Germany invites applications for 3 positions as doctoral researchers with a focus on governance and sustainable transformations.

The successful candidates will be based in the research group: “Transformation and Sustainability Governance in South American Bioeconomies”

Salary Level: 65 % E13 TV-L (Salary per month approx. € 2494 to € 3654)

The position is available starting at the earliest date possible for a three-year period ending on 31 December 2022 with the possibility of extension and an option to increase salary level up to 100 %. Currently the regular full employment time is 39 hours and 50 minutes per week.

About the Position and the Project

Founded in 1780, the University of Muenster is one of the leading German universities with tradition. The collaborative research group is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Food Agriculture (BMEL) and consists of two subgroups collaborating at the interface between agricultural economics (Subgroup I, University of Bonn, Prof. Dr. Jan Börner) and political science (Subgroup II, University of Münster, Prof. Dr. Thomas Dietz). Together, the two subgroups focus on sustainable bioeconomic transformation processes in South America.

South American countries are currently major producers of globally traded bio-based commodities. At the same time, the region faces major transformation challenges. While many countries seek to expand their dynamic bioeconomic sectors, it has become obvious that the regional and global socio-economic and ecological risks associated with bioeconomic growth require appropriate safeguards and sustainability strategies. Hence, transformation towards sustainable bioeconomies, vis-à-vis the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda, represents a complex governance challenge for most South American countries.

Research is organized in three components that run over a period of three (plus three) years:

1. Country case studies: In depth case studies of local and national scale transformation processes and related political strategies.
2. Comparative analyses: Comparative analyses at regional and global scales to identify enabling factors and impact pathways of bioeconomic transformation processes.
3. Scenarios and governance demands: Interdisciplinary scenario development to support policy design.

Main Tasks

  • Development and execution of one in depth case study on the governance of bioeconomic transformation processes in Argentina, Brazil or Uruguay
  • Publication of articles in leading journals
  • Presentation of research at workshops and conferences
  • Participation in the development of research collaborations with local and national partners in Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay
  • Active participation in the development and dissemination of research to support policy design
  • Position Requirements


  •  university degree (political science or related discipline)
  • Demonstrable knowledge of case study design. Demonstrable knowledge of qualitative and quantitative research methods.
  • Demonstrable knowledge in the field of governance of sustainable transformations
  • Excellent command of the English and Spanish language for the Argentinian and Uruguayan case studies; excellent command of the English and Portuguese language for the Brazilian case study


  • Experience in conducting case study research in South America
  • Existing relations to policy makers and research institutions in Argentina, Brazil or Uruguay

The University of Muenster is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to increasing the proportion of women academics. Consequently, we actively encourage applications by women. Female candidates with equivalent qualifications and academic achievements will be preferentially considered within the framework of the legal possibilities.

We also welcome applications from candidates with severe disabilities. Physically challenged candidates with equivalent qualifications will be preferentially considered.

If you wish to know more about this role or for an informal discussion please feel free to contact Prof Thomas Dietz, University of Muenster (

Applicants are requested to send a full CV, list of publications, a statement of interest and contact information of two referees as a single PDF. Applications close midnight Monday 25 November 2019 CET.

Please send your application by email to: